Tue, Jun 12, 2018 - Page 10 News List

World Business Quick Take

Agencies

UNITED KINGDOM

Revised M&A rules in effect

The government revised merger and acquisition (M&A) rules to make it easier to block takeovers of companies when officials are concerned about risks to national security. The measures, which took effect yesterday, apply to businesses that make technology with military or dual-use applications, including computer hardware. The changes are to help keep the UK safe and sustain its reputation as an “open, trading nation,” the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy said in a statement. The changes were proposed last year. The change lets ministers intervene on certain grounds if the target UK business’ annual revenue exceeds £1 million (US$1.34 million), down from £70 million. The new rules also scrap a requirement that a merger needed to increase the combined firms’ market share to 25 percent before a review is started.

ELECTRIC VEHICLES

Amperex stock jumps

Shares of the world’s biggest maker of electric-vehicle batteries jumped on their trading debut (IPO) as investors bet on rising demand for new-energy cars worldwide. Contemporary Amperex Technology Ltd (CATL, 新能源科技) rose by the maximum 44 percent to 36.20 yuan (US$5.65) at 10:17am in Shenzhen, China, valuing the company at about US$12.3 billion. The manufacturer sold a 10 percent stake at 25.14 yuan per share in its initial public offering on May 30. Investors are confident that CATL can fend off rivals including Panasonic Corp and continue to win orders as automakers move toward electric vehicles. CATL, whose customers include Volkswagen AG, had reduced the size of its IPO by more than half compared with its original ambitions because of declining margins and a cap imposed by Chinese authorities on price-earnings ratios in IPOs.

NIGERIA

Sovereign fund shifts focus

The Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) is restructuring its portfolio to focus more on domestic investments after a drop in the currency wiped out foreign exchange gains last year. “The asset allocation strategy of NSIA has been restructured to reflect an increased focus on domestic infrastructure investments with 50 percent of future contributions to be dedicated to infrastructure,” the fund said in a statement yesterday. The fund, which last year had 80 percent of assets under management denominated in dollars, saw valuations decline after the central bank introduced policies that weakened the naira by at least 15 percent against the greenback.

INVESTMENT

Abraaj funds commingled

Middle Eastern investment firm Abraaj Group, which has been roiled by allegations of misused funds, commingled about US$95 million after it faced cash shortages, Deloitte said in the findings of a review. The accounting firm, which was hired by Abraaj to examine its finances, found that there was commingling of Abraaj’s own money in the healthcare fund and its fourth fund, according to a summary of the Deloitte report that was presented to creditors on Monday last week and seen by Bloomberg News. Money from Abraaj’s US$1 billion healthcare fund was used to pay management fees and other expenses, Deloitte said. Abraaj still owes US$94.6 million to its so-called Private Equity Fund IV, but all money has been accounted for and there is no evidence of embezzlement or misappropriation. Abraaj and Deloitte declined to comment.

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